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Achieve Life Mastery

How to Stay Calm in Any Situation

We all know people in our lives who are as cool as anything. These are the people who never seem to get fazed by anything. No matter how the world is crashing down around them, they know just what to say and do. And they act as a calming influence on everyone around them.

Then there are other people who get into a flap, who panic, and who shout.

Guess who is the more effective in a crisis? Guess who makes the better leader? Guess who people look up to more?

So staying calm in any situation is incredibly useful skill to have.

The question is how you go about overcoming the all too human urge to lose it?

In this article, we’ll go over some simple steps you can take to keep your cool.


Breathe

The first thing you need to do is to breathe. Recognize that the reason you’re panicking is that you have gone into the fight or flight mode. This is your body’s physiological response to trouble and it causes you heart-rate to become elevated, your breathing to accelerate and your mind to race. Not helpful!

If you breathe though, then you can regain your composure and fix your ‘parasympathetic tone’. In plain English, you can trigger your ‘rest and digest’ state, which is the polar opposite of fight or flight.

To get into this zone, you’re going to use something called ‘belly breathing’. Breathe by expanding your gut first and that way you can fill your lungs more completely starting at the bottom. Breathe in and out for a count of three on each.


Take a Step Back

The next step is to try and get your head in the game by removing your emotional response. You might be scared, worried for a friend, or upset. None of these things will help. So instead, take a step back and try to imagine what someone who wasn’t you would do in this situation.

What would James Bond do?

Assess the situation in a more removed manner and you’ll come up with a better solution.


Assess What Needs To Be Done

One of the reasons that many of us become frozen with fear is that we don’t want to take responsibility and make matters worse, rather than better.

To avoid this, quickly identify the worst case scenario and the best case scenario. Accept the possibility of the worst case scenario but take the steps you need to take to work toward the latter.

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